The International Olympic Committee announced history’s first-ever Olympic Esports Week in 2023, as well as the city that will host it.
The International Olympic Committee made the historic announcement on Wednesday that the first ever Olympic Esports Week will take place in 2023.
Singapore, as a city-state, will play home to the first-ever event, which will be jointly organised by the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the Singapore National Olympic Committee (NOC), the Ministry of Culture, Community, and Youth (MCCY), and the Sport Singapore statutory board.
The inaugural Olympic Esports Week will take place next year in Singapore between June 22 and 25, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has confirmed.
The IOC hopes the announcement will mark the next step in “supporting the development of virtual sports within the Olympic Movement and engaging further with competitive gamers” around the world.
IOC President Thomas Bach has described the first Olympic Esports Week scheduled to take place in Singapore next year as an “important milestone”
The idea of making esports an Olympic event has been discussed and debated for at least the past five years, and it was originally thought that various official medal sports categories for competitive gaming may be introduced in the 2018 Winter Olympics.
After the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics were postponed by a year due to the global COVID-19 outbreak, preparations for the 2021 Olympic Virtual Series were hastened.
Now, four years later, on June 25th, 2023, the International Olympic Committee will host the first-ever Olympic Esports Week.
The organisers claim that this competition will feature the most innovative technologies that make possible both virtual and “hybrid physical” sports.
The exact events that will be played during Olympic Esports Week 2023 have not yet been announced, but the confirmed genres include cycling, sailing, baseball, rowing, and several types of motorsports.
It’s likely that the final category list won’t cause too much controversy, despite the fact that most of today’s most popular competitive games involve violence.
However, the Olympic Esports Series, a follow-up to the 2021 Olympic Virtual Series, will also have its finals held in front of a live audience during the inaugural Olympic Esports Week.
IOC officials believe that the 2023 competition will draw an even greater pool of competitive gamers than the previous year’s event, which drew over 250,000 competitors from more than a hundred countries.
This first-ever Olympic Esports Week will assist the IOC in bridging the gap between the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics and the Paris 2024 Summer Olympics.
The fact that the Olympic Esports Week is happening at all is a major step forward in eSports’ quest for worldwide recognition, even if the event itself won’t be as spectacular as the likes of The International or the Fortnite World Cup Finals.
Given that it took the International Olympic Committee a long time to accept the idea of including video games among its categories, this is especially true.